Stein’s engaging and informative How the States Got Their Shapes (the basis for the History Channel series) told the stories behind the development of our weird jigsaw-puzzle of a nation. Now he looks at the equally quirky, yet serious, history of how Americans have defined and regulated vices. While we think of bowling as a harmless pastime, it was outlawed in colonial America. Today, we place more and more restrictions on where people can light up cigarettes, yet simultaneously ease regulations on smoking pot. Morality seems to shift with the prevailing cultural and political winds and Stein, a screenwriter and playwright, has a keen eye for the inherent humor and significance of our struggles to tell right from wrong.